Canadian Manufacturing

Cleantech startup Diacarbon gets $2M EDC financing

Money will help fund a thermal biomass refinery to convert wood waste into low carbon bio-fuels

VANCOUVER—Vancouver-based Diacarbon Energy Inc. has received $2 million in financing from Export Development Canada (EDC).

The money will help Diacarbon develop a thermal biomass refinery to convert wood waste into low carbon bio-fuels ready for distribution. The plant is planned for the interior of British Columbia.

Diacarbon is a startup cleantech company producing wood pellets and developing torrefied biocoal, both of which can be used as a replacement for fossil coal. Since 2009, Diacarbon has focused its efforts on perfecting its biocoal product made from natural wood waste and now aims to demonstrate commercial scale production and distribution.

“EDC’s investment provided the working capital that allowed us to grow our business and expand our technological base.” said Jerry Ericsson, President and CEO of Diacarbon. “The export markets are very interested in both our pellets and biocoal over the near and long term.”

Biocoal is a form of charcoal that is produced during the precise heating of wood waste through a process called torrefaction. Unlike wood pellets, biocoal is a direct replacement for fossil coal owing to a similar energy density and water resistance, allowing it to be used without any changes in existing industrial infrastructure. This makes biocoal more appealing than wood pellets to power generation utilities looking to replace their coal usage with a lower carbon alternative.

“Cleantech is one of Canada’s highest growth sectors and more than half of the industry’s revenues come from exports,” said Carl Burlock, Senior Vice-President, Financing and Investments, EDC. “Diacarbon is an example of great innovation in clean energy technology and EDC is pleased to help close gaps in their financing” added Burlock.

Clean technology has become a corporate priority at EDC, with a dedicated team focused on understanding the industry’s needs and delivering the right solutions to help Canadian cleantech companies start up and grow their business internationally.

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